Campaigning in Dubuque, Iowa, President Barack Obama said the country has much going for it except politics in Washington. He said that Republican opponent Mitt Romney is a standard-bearer for no compromise, top-down economics who says “the only way to go forward is to move backwards.”
** QUICK HITS. Not surprisingly, a bill by San Francisco state Senator Leland Yee to close, in the wake of the Dark Knight Rises shootings in Colorado what many regard as a loophole in California’s assault weapons ban died today in a state legislative committee. As expected, there is no real move I’m aware of anywhere do anything about what happened, despite all the predictable media hand-wringing. I wrote at the time that I didn’t expect any action. … Meanwhile, the attacks and counter-attacks in the presidential race are rocking on. With Mitt Romney deciding last night to take it all very personally, after picking the intellectual leader of House Republicans as his running mate, that’s no surprise. … In some bad news on the aerospace pioneering front, even as the Jet Propulsion Lab in LA successfully upgraded and rebooted the operating software for the Mars rover mission, the Air Force’s X-51 ultra-sonic space plane test off the California coast today ended in failure. A faulty control fin prevented the start of the experimental “scramjet” engine and the WaveRider craft broke apart in mid-air. … The experimental craft, which some believe could accelerate air speeds to as much as 18,000 miles per hour, was dropped from a B-52 Stratofortress bomber. The B-52 airframe first flew in 1952, entering full service in 1955.
** NEW SURVEY: AND THE ONLY REASON WHY ROMNEY HASN’T LONG SINCE LOST THE ELECTION … A new Gallup Poll survey reveals — wait, drum roll — why Mitt Romney hadn’t already lost the election many months ago.
America just isn’t well.
In fact, it’s downright depressed.
Twenty-three percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the United States, with 75% dissatisfied. That is the same as the average for 2012 to date, and indicates that last month’s slightly higher 28% satisfaction rating was not the beginning of sustained improvement. …
The current level of satisfaction could put President Barack Obama’s re-election in jeopardy. Satisfaction is now similar to what it was in early August 1992 (17%), prior to George H.W. Bush’s re-election defeat. It is significantly lower than what it was in mid-August 1996 (38%) and mid-August 2004 (44%), years in which incumbents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, respectively, were re-elected.
Gallup does not have August estimates of satisfaction in earlier incumbent re-election years. However, during 1984, satisfaction was generally near 50% when Ronald Reagan was re-elected. Gallup did not ask satisfaction at all in 1980 — the year in which Jimmy Carter was defeated — but it is probably safe to assume it was low, given a reading of 19% in November 1979 and 17% in January 1981.
Democrats (35%) are currently much more likely to be satisfied than Republicans (12%), but Democrats are hardly upbeat about the state of the nation. Independents’ satisfaction level falls in between, but is closer to that of Republicans. …
Barnstorming across Iowa by bus, President Barack Obama accuses conservative Republican challenger Mitt Romney of wanting to maintain billions in taxpayer subsidies for oil companies rather than invest in promising “homegrown energy sources.”
** OBAMA TODAY. President Barack Obama is in Iowa and Washington, DC.
He is on the third day of a three-day bus tour of Iowa, this swing state which afforded him his big breakthrough in the 2008 Iowa presidential caucuses.
At 10:25 AM Pacific, Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama deliver remarks at a campaign event at the Alliant Energy Amphitheater in Dubuque, Iowa.
At 3:35 PM Pacific, the Obamas deliver remarks at a campaign event at the Village of East Davenport in Davenport, Iowa.
At 4:50 PM Pacific, the Obamas depart the Quad Cities Airport at Moline, Illinois (just across the Iowa state line) on Air Force One en route Joint Base Andrews.
That, incidentally, is where I saw Senator Gary Hart off on a plane to New Hampshire the day of the 1984 Iowa presidential caucuses, telling him he would finish second there, to which he replied that if he was second in Iowa, he would win New Hampshire. Which is what happened.
At 6:50 PM Pacific, the Obamas arrive at Joint Base Andrews, where they board Marine One.
At 7:05 PM Pacific, the Obamas land on the South Lawn of the White House.
With his pick of running mate, right-wing Congressman Paul Ryan, coming under lots of fire and provoking a not surprising change of focus from the economy to Ryan’s highly controversial plans to rework the federal budget and the government along the lines advocated by libertarian novelist Ayn Rand, Mitt Romney last night reacted with a new speech attacking Obama for supposedly being the most negative campaigner he can recall.
Romney was in quite a mood, reportedly. I will try to get video.
Obama’s campaign, says Romney, is all about “division and attack and hatred.”
The speech was reported by campaign sources to be essentially self-penned. As it were.
Romney also seems to forget, or hopes that everyone else does, his own campaign.
The only reason he is the Republican nominee is that he and his mega-bucks allies gunned down all opposition with all-negative/all-the-time campaign ads.
Obama is monitoring several geopolitical crises involving the Arab Awakening, Iran and Israel, Syria, Iraq, AfPak, and the South China Sea.
Military Crisis Zone Times: The Arabian Gulf is ten hours ahead of Pacific time and Afghanistan is eleven and a half hours ahead of Pacific time. The time in Manila, on the South China Sea, is fifteen hours ahead of Pacific time.
Scientists at the world’s highest atmospheric monitoring station, in Bolivia, are studying the impact of climate change. With the data gathered from South America’s chain of tropical glaciers, they hope to predict weather patterns in an area of the world heavily impacted by the effects of climate change. In California, Governor Jerry Brown, decrying the effects of climate change on the Sierra Nevada and Lake Tahoe, this week launched a new web site debunking the greenhouse deniers.
** FROM THE JERRY FILES. Governor Jerry Brown is in Sacramento.
At 10:30 AM, Brown will kick off the pre-Labor Day portion of his public campaign for the Proposition 30 revenue initiative Wednesday with an appearance at New Technology High School, a charter school in South Sacramento.
Proposition 30 will give a big boost to the schools with new funding and by averting likely cuts to existing funding, as well as bringing the overall state budget closer into balance.
** NEW COLUMN COMING UP … RECALLING TOTAL RECALL.
** LONDON’S GRAND OLYMPICS, ON AND OFF THE TRACK. … From my August 13th essay.
** GORE VIDAL: REMEMBERING A BRILLIANT, CONTROVERSIAL LEGEND OF THE SORT WE DON’T FOSTER ANY MORE. … From my August 3rd essay.
** ROMNEY’S DANGEROUS BUFFOONERY. … From my August 1st essay.
** SUNRISE IN CALIFORNIA? … From my July 26th feature.
** CHINA MOVES SWIFTLY ON NEW “CITY” ENCOMPASSING SOUTH CHINA SEA, GULF CRISIS SIMMERS. … From my July 24th feature.
** THE DARK KNIGHT SHOOTINGS: “ALL IT TAKES IS A LITTLE PUSH.” … From my July 21st column.
** MITT WHITMAN = MEG ROMNEY. … From my July 19th column.
** CRISES CHAOTIC AND BUBBLING: THE GULF AND THE SOUTH CHINA SEA. … From my July 17th essay.
** FROM GOVERNATOR TO MOONBEAM. … From my January 3rd, 2011 feature.
** OBAMA: RIDING WITH HISTORY. (NOTE: As Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th president of the United States, this column was the featured column on the top of the front page of the Huffington Post.) … From my January 19th, 2009 Huffington Post column.
The US Air Force today planned a key test of an experimental aircraft designed to fly at six times the speed of sound, or about 6,500kph. The unmanned X-51A WaveRider, the military’s latest attempt at hypersonic flight, was expected to reach Mach 6 after it is dropped by a B-52 bomber and takes flight off the Southern California coast.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM AL JAZEERA. With the US entangled in major military operations in the region, and the Arab awakening underway, it’s valuable to keep up with news and perspectives from the leading Middle Eastern-based TV news network. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer. The NWN live link to AJ does not constitute an endorsement of the channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM RUSSIA TODAY. Russia has re-emerged as one of the world’s great powers. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer from the Russia Today channel. The NWN live link to RT does not constitute an endorsement of the state-run channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** TRACK GLOBAL AND NATIONAL ENERGY PRICES IN NEAR REAL TIME VIA BLOOMBERG ENERGY MARKET WATCH. Having crashed over $147 for yet another record on July 11th, 2008, crude oil is trading around $95 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
This is up about $61 from the low of $34 per barrel prior to enactment of the Obama economic recovery program, reflecting a low point in global economic activity, and down about $19 per barrel from the price at the time of the Osama bin Laden raid.
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